The World Within

I remember reading a science fiction story many years ago, whose title and author for the life of me escapes me that dealt with the concept of whole worlds and civilisations living one within another.

The protagonists in the story were researching miniaturisation techniques; if I recall it correctly, and as they did they got to the point of successful magnification that suddenly on the material there were studying they saw people and a civilisation entirely on the microscopic level in their view.

At first, imagine their excitement!  A whole new world – excuse the pun, of scientific research.

As they developed better techniques to watch on these new found specimens they came on a disturbing discovery.  In one of the microscopic labs they found people doing exactly what they were doing, except at an even more microscopic level.

Suddenly the world view changes – as they ask themselves the question: are they the ultimate watchers or is someone else watching them, watching someone else, watching someone else, etc.

Sometimes when my mind is wandering over the battlefield of my emotions and thoughts I can’t help but think of that world within the story.

When people see me do they see only the exterior shell and assume all is well because my two arms and legs are moving in coordination with each other.  My eyes and mouth and ears seem to function as they expect and so they dismiss the thought of any other internal functions or mental processes.

Do they understand the whole world going on inside me, not just the normal physical symbiosis that goes on in the body, but the world war going on in my mind!

There is the rational, logical mind where I evaluate things in context.  Where I see and hear things as other people may see them and make decisions based more on these intellectual processes with just a usual hint of emotion and wanting.

Then there is the other side of my mind where my emotions rule; where the rule of rational thought and evaluation go by the board.

Did that person look at me and smile, or were they hiding some secret about me?  Why does life seem so happy and emotionally satisfying today and then tomorrow, the storm clouds gather, the thunder rumbles and the lightning of anger and irritation flash.

Does this inner world where my thoughts and emotions turn to self destructive urges and ideas of how the whole outside world would be better off without me, exist for other people to notice.  Or am I doomed to constantly switch between being the rational researcher to the endlessly researched, until I finally succumb to that insidious, seductive little voice, inviting me to end the research now and not wait for the outsiders to finish.


Graham Brown

17 September 2005


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